For the past five or six months or so, and after our evening walk, Divinity’s been pacing around the upper floor where we sleep.
Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome (CDS), commonly known as Sundowners Syndrome, is a type of mood or sleep disorder often associated with the early stages of dementia. Pets affected by Sundowner’s can experience confusion during the late afternoon, or early evening hours.
Clinical signs of Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome are found in 50 percent of dogs over the age of 11, and by the age of 15, 68 percent of dogs display at least one sign of CDS. Divinity is almost 14-1/2. and pacing is currently the only symptom of CDS that Divinity is exhibiting..
There is a prescription drug available (Anipryl). However, neither Dr. Heather, nor Dr. Steve recommended it. Instead, a non-prescription medication (Novifit) was suggested. Novifit takes 3-4 weeks to begin working, and I’ve ordered a two month supply.
Now this is certainly not a “death sentence” for my little lady, but it is a sign that the effects of age, and possibly effects of the nine years that she spent in a puppy-mill are surfacing.
Here are some links to information on Sundowner’s Syndrome
Canine Cognitive Dysfunction (Senility)
Cognitive Dysfunction in Dogs (Diane Frank (DMV) University of Montreal)